Poetry Inside Out

Poetry Inside Out teaches students vital reading and writing skills through a creative, imaginative program that puts poetry and translation at the heart of literacy instruction, bringing world literature to thousands of students and teachers since 2000.

Poetry Inside Out is dedicated to the idea that all students can become literate in the fullest sense of the word, with the knowledge that reading is for understanding and writing is for sharing ideas. The program gives students the chance to actively engage with and participate in the arts.

Students study poems by world-class poets in the language in which they were written—Spanish, Chinese, Russian, Arabic, and many others—and learn the process of literary translation. They then use those translated poems as inspiration and resource for writing their own poems.

As they hunt through the dictionary, engage in spirited debate about word choices, and create their own diverse, playful, and deeply felt poems, students gain an appreciation for the complexities of language and culture, and build the 21st century learning skills—creativity and innovation, critical thinking and problem solving, and communication and collaboration—needed for success in their academic careers and beyond. Poetry Inside Out helps students see themselves in a new light, to think of themselves as learners and writers.

The program is taught by classroom teachers trained to integrate the curriculum into language arts instruction. We lead workshops in the Bay Area and several U.S. cities. For more information, contact Program Director Mark Hauber at mhauber@catranslation.org.

Interested in bringing Poetry Inside Out to your classroom? Bay Area teachers can register for our workshop on September 25-26, 2015 here.

Help Keep Poetry Inside Out Strong!

Poetry Inside Out relies in large part on charitable donations to help spur the imaginations of children all over the United States. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation today.


Since 2000 Poetry Inside Out has taught almost 10,000 students around the Bay Area and around the U.S., introducing them to great world poetry and translation.

Poetry Inside Out has trained teachers in San Francisco, Oakland, New York, San Diego, St. Louis, Boston and Philadelphia, with more sites planned.